CrossFit Open 17.2 Recap: We Are All Cheerleaders

Saturday, I headed to the box to compete in the CrossFit Open 17.2 workout. Dave Castro had dropped some clues on his Instagram account, but the clues were nonsensical. Lesson One: I’m not paying attention to Castro’s clues anymore. It takes way too much mental gymnastics, and I need to focus on my actual gymnastics for the Open.
With that in mind, the CrossFit Open 17.2 WOD was:
Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 12 minutes of:
2 rounds of:
  • 50-ft. weighted walking lunge
  • 16 hanging knee raises
  • 8 power cleans
Then, 2 rounds of:
  • 50-ft. weighted walking lunge
  • 16 chin-over-bar pullups
  • 8 power cleans
Etc., alternating between hanging knee raises and chin-over-bar pullups every 2 rounds
 CrossFit Open 17.2 weighted walking lunges
This is the scaled version, with 20-lb. dumbbells for the lunges and power cleans. Scaled had real, live pullups. The buzz around this WOD was not good; I think a lot of women were not happy that they had to do pullups when most of us don’t have them.
Me, I’ve managed to get two in the box. So I wasn’t as worried that I’d get stuck on the pullups with no reps. I knew I could get a couple, which would put me a little ahead in scaled.

CrossFit Open 17.2: How It Went Down

My friend Mariel put me in the first heat with her. We’re at similar abilities, so we’d be working out side by side for this. Jodie was my judge again. I did a quick warm-up: 400 meter run, some stretches to loosen my shoulders. We gathered up to listen to the standards, then grabbed our dumbbells and headed to a pre-marked spot. Mariel and I were very protective of our pull-up bar; we’re both short, so we will always choose the one that requires the least amount of stretching to reach.

At 3…2…1…GO!, we picked up our dumbbells, cleaned them up to our shoulders, and started lunging. Honestly, the lunges and power cleans were pretty easy; I have strong legs and do so many power cleans that using the dumbbells for it didn’t slow me down. The knee raises did; I no-repped once because I didn’t bring my feet back. I had made sure that Jodie knew to write down my tie-breaker time. That was important, since I knew I wasn’t going to finish the workout. I didn’t have 16 pullups in me.

CrossFit Open 17.2 Hanging Knee Raises
This was before hanging knee raises.

Before I knew it, I was standing under the pull-up bar. It was go-time for my two pull-ups. Given that we all do a little better in the open, I optimistically hoped for four. I jumped up to the bar and yanked myself over it. One. I struggled through another. Two.

Jodie had flipped from judge to cheerleader somewhere in there, when I was hanging on the bar and trying to kick my way over the bar. I got a couple more, and I looked at the clock. I still had plenty of time, and since I had gotten a few, I was going to keep going. At another point, Holly came over to coach me through a few.

When the 12 minutes were up, I had done 13 pullups.



More than I thought I could.

My hands hurt when I dropped off the bar. I hugged Jodie; she had been a great cheerleader/judge.

CrossFit Open 17.2 was done.

I stuck around to judge/cheer for Jodie. She crushed those lunges, knee raises, and power cleans. She’s been CrossFitting for less than three months, and watching her was incredible. I also saw a few people get their first muscle-ups and watched Leslie get 16 muscle-ups, then head back to the lunges.

In the Open, we all do things we didn’t think we could do. We exceed our expectations. We hang around and watch our friends perform incredible feats of athleticism, whether it’s their first muscle-up, toes to bar, or pullup. And we cheer. We cheer for ourselves, and we cheer for each other. I say it a lot, but CrossFit is a community full of friendly competition. None of us are going to Regionals or the Games without buying a spectator ticket, but we put in the work and challenge ourselves and each other.

It’s what I love about CrossFit.

*All photos by Rob Salinas.